Facebook Sabermetrics.

Is Bill James on Facebook?

I’m not going to do a football recap post today.  First, because I didn’t get around to it this morning, but also because there isn’t much to say.  I said to someone yesterday that the NFL is a clean slate league.  Every week the games take place as an independent event, like a coin-flip.  If a team scores 50 one week they might score 14 the next.  A QB can look awful one week and great the next.  Sure, Green Bay is going to beat a team like the Rams almost every single time, but if you try for actual useful information or insight, you often come up empty.  So, I’m going to take a break in regard to trying to figure out the NFL.  The Packers are still #1 in the Power Rankings, that’s all you need to know.

Instead of football, I’m going to focus on America’s other pastime…Facebook.  I’m on Facebook.  I’ve got 76 friends (not a typo).  I occasionally see news on the site, I check people’s updates, but I’m not a real prolific or proficient user.  I don’t post updates much.  I rarely comment, and on principle, I never “like.”  Facebook is great for pictures, the occasional joke, a link, some light stalking, but you know what it needs more of?  Stats.  I’d like some hardcore Facebook stats. Then, you could really break down a profile.  At least on Twitter you can see the Follow/Following ratio.  That’s a great stat.  If you follow 1,345 people and have 38 followers?  It’s probably time to get off Twitter.  But, with Facebook, about the only thing going is total friends.  And, that’s about as useful as the RBI.


Personal Attrition Rate (PAR):  This stat would measure how annoying or creepy you are.  How many times a year are you de-friended?  I’m sure the de-friending process takes many forms.  Spite, symbolism, general house cleaning, but regardless of the reason,  if you get the boot–it has to mean something.

Feed Block Ratio (FBR):  This measures how annoying or inane you are.  What percentage of your friends find you so intolerable that they block your updates from appearing?  This would be a great stat to know when weighing a friend request.  Is this person going to bury me in an avalanche of pointless status updates, links and photos?

Personal Picture Ratio (PPR):  This stat measures your vanity.  Of the pictures you post, how many are of your own delightful mug?  One thing I like about Facebook is seeing some pictures.  Look at this blizzard, look I got to play Pebble Beach yesterday, look at this a-hole’s personalized license plate…those things are all worthwhile.  What I don’t want to see is your stupid face blocking the view of the 18th hole.  Get over yourself, lower your PPR.

Pet or Baby PPR:  This is the same stat as above, but it calculates how many pictures you post are of your pet or of your own kid.  I’m not going to judge here, just saying sometimes it’s good to know these things.

Overall Request Factor (ORF):  Friend Requests Sent divided by Total friends X 100.  A lot of debate over this stat.  Some suggest it reflects your level of introversion.  Others say it’s a great measure for over-eagerness.  You could use this though, to put value to a friend request you receive.  If someone has a very low ORF (something in the 12-15 range) then you should know that the friend request is sincere and genuine.  If someone’s ORF is well over 50–they probably just friend request the World on a daily basis.

Like Button Affinity (LBA):  Like Button Clicks per week + 2X Like Button Clicks on your significant other’s posts divided by 7.  This measures your inability to come up with a witty comment and your propensity for sticking your nose in everything.  I think some people like updates and pics because they don’t have the time or ability to come up with a good one-liner.  Other people just want to latch onto a thread in any way possible.  Either way, get an idea of how much you’re using the old thumbs up.

Adjusted Friend Total (AFT):  I don’t have the formula figured out for this, but basically it would take your life and factor in all your chances to make Facebook friends.  It distinguishes between people who had 20,000 people in their college class vs. people who had 450.  It takes into account your job, your other friends, etc.  How many friends would the average person living your life have?  Divide that number into your actual number of friends and you get AFT.  An AFT of 1.00 is normal.  2.00 and you are twice as friendly as the average person who lived your life.

Original Product Percentage (OPP):  This stat measures your originality.  What percentage of non-personal updates (Crushing some Apple Jacks!!! OMG–Delish!) are the words of others?  Do you have an unusual tendency to post rap lyrics?  Do you respond to other people’s updates with Simpsons quotes?  That kind of thing.

Exclamation Point Abuse Syndrome (EPAS):  How many characters, on average, do you type before hitting an exclamation point?  Calculated by using a progression of value.  For example, the above update about Apple Jacks has 37 characters.  There are 4 total exclamation points, but using the three in a triple sequence makes them worth 1, 2 and 3 respectively.  So, your EPAS for that update would be 7/37 or .19, which is pretty shocking.

Value Over Replacement Profile (VORP):  This is the granddaddy of them all.  Again, the details are a little hazy, but this measures your overall value to Facebook.  It’s not just about friend total, or wit, or hot beach pics–It’s about the entire package.  What are you contributing to the Facebook society?  Could anyone off the street, a simpleton who’s still on MySpace or something come in and recreate your profile with ease?  How much utility are you really adding to the world? If you dare, you can calculate your Facebook VORP.


5 thoughts on “Facebook Sabermetrics.

  1. This, is classic. Love the clarification that the .19 EPAS figure is shocking. I predict that in three weeks David Jacoby and Katie Baker will have a new article at Grantland proposing Facebook Sabermetrics.

  2. um, yeah, another well done article at 3-Putt. very much enjoyed it. and i can say that my PPR has dropped since increasingly finding satisfaction with my non-virtual life. are there correlations? i’d like to see that in the discussion section of the stats. i also want to go on record as saying i am sure some university (i dunno brown), would likely fund this work at the phd anthro level.


  3. well, i have sincerely known several good people who went there. would allow my kids to go there before cornell or penn state.

    but not like i lose sleep over the next generation of Q’s. they’ll be awesome.
    they may hate school…and realize spelling and grammar IS over-rated.


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